cost benefit of accessible epub3

The Added Value in Accessible ePub3

At a price difference of $.10/page, there is immense added value in Accessible ePub3 as a format choice. 


ePub3 @ $.80/page

Accessible ePub3 @$.90/page

Semantic Structure

Relies on standard HTML semantics.

Emphasizes proper semantic tagging, such as headings, lists, tables, etc., to enhance accessibility.


Basic linear reading order and basic navigation elements (e.g., TOC).

Improved navigation with landmarks, page lists, and navigation tables for easier content navigation by assistive technologies.

Image Descriptions

Alt text for images can be provided, but it may be limited or missing.

Requires comprehensive and accurate image descriptions (alt text) to provide context and information for non-text content.


Standard HTML tables can be used.

Requires proper table markup, including table headers and captions, to improve accessibility for screen readers.


Standard HTML form elements.

Requires well-structured forms with properly associated labels and instructions.


Supported but not always utilized.

Encourages the use of MathML for mathematical equations and formulas.


Limited use of ARIA attributes.

Utilizes ARIA attributes for improved accessibility, like ARIA landmarks and roles.

Text-to-Speech (TTS) Support

Basic TTS functionality is available.

Enhanced TTS support with better synchronization and handling of reading order.

Text Resize

May or may not support dynamic text resizing.

Should support dynamic text resizing without loss of content or functionality.

Language and Spelling Assistance

Relies on external tools and browser support.

Provides built-in language and spelling assistance features.

Media Overlays (audiobooks)

Supported through external applications.

Incorporates built-in support for media overlays, making audiobooks more accessible.

Metadata for Accessibility

Limited focus on accessibility metadata.

Extends metadata support to provide specific accessibility information, like text-to-speech settings and accessibility features.

Reading Order Control

Reading order may not be explicitly defined.

Allows for explicit reading order control through proper markup and techniques.

Text Adaptation

Limited control over text presentation.

Allows users to adapt text presentation to suit their needs (e.g., change font, size, color).

Text-to-Speech (TTS) Control

Basic control over TTS settings, if supported by the reading system.

Provides better control over TTS settings, like voice selection and speed.

Multimedia Support

Allows embedding of audio, video, and interactive elements.

Encourages providing alternatives and ensuring compatibility with assistive technologies.


Supports JavaScript for creating interactive and dynamic content.

Encourages using scripting responsibly, ensuring accessibility is not compromised.

Standards Compliance

Complies with EPUB3 standard.

Aligns with accessibility standards like WCAG, aiming for broader compliance.

Certification Initiatives

No specific certification initiatives.

Organizations like Benetech Global Certified Accessible (GCA) may offer certification programs (e.g., Global Certified Accessible Program).

Ongoing Development

EPUB3 standard development continues.

Accessibility features may be refined based on evolving standards and user needs.

    • Related Articles

    • The Evolution of ePUB and Case for Accessible ePUB3

      The world of digital publishing has seen considerable change over the past decade; at the heart of these changes lies the ePub format, one of the most popular and universally accepted eBook formats.. The ePub Journey ePub 1 (2007) As a replacement ...
    • Which eBook Format Should I Choose?

      As distribution channels evolve, the decision about which format is best becomes simpler. A decade ago, when ePub was new and untried, ebook distribution channels like Amazon and Kobo developed their own ePub standards, which resulted in a confusing ...
    • Onix for Accessible EPUB

      ONIX is the universal metadata protocol used by publishers worldwide to support the marketing of books through all supply chains. For every format issued, a separate ISBN is required, which in turn requires an onix record. By the time most books are ...
    • Remediated Onix for Accessible ePub

      Every Accessible ePUB3 conversion order delivered by DPS is accompanied by an Onix record which has been modified to add the Codelist 196 standards described here. These remediated records will be found in the Title record on the platform (see ...
    • Choosing a Conversion Supplier

      At this link, NNELS provides a list of questions that publishers seeking Accessible EPUB should put to potential conversion suppliers. The answer from desLibris Publishing Solutions to every question is "yes." Working with a Third-Party Accessible ...